World Cosplay Summit 2016 – Part 1: The preparations

World Cosplay Summit 2016 – Part 1: The preparations

Picture by Japanaily
I am back from one of my biggest journeys of my life and my head is full of great memories, experiences and new friendships. It was an honor to participate at the World Cosplay Summit and Iam really grateful for this experience.
I never though that the World CosplaySummit would be such a rewarding event.

This is why I decided to blog about it. So I can share my experience and write down my memories and thoughts.

If you have any questions or wishes about which topic I should write. Please don’t hesitate to ask.

Today I want to start with the Preliminary 1 year ago and the way to the championship.

The Preliminary in Germany:

One year ago I participated with my partner Chiko at the Preliminary at the Connichi, one of the biggest Anime/ Manga events in Germany.
I did I because I really love to perform and could try out new things on stage next to singing and dancing.
I never though we really would be become the next WCS Team Germany, because I know that other awesome Cosplayer are trying since years and years and I was just a rookie who started to participate at competitions recently.
I was happy but really felt unsure if I would be really able to represent Germany accordingly.

Buying the materials:
Because we never expected to become the next team we already planned and booked a Asia trip in November.
This was also the reason why we decided a week after the preliminary which costume we are going to bring to Japan. We knew that we would visit Taipei and Dubai, where you can get fabrics and crafting supplies for small money.
I calculated the time schedule for the WCS and realized directly after the preliminary that we don’t have a lot of time and need to start practicing an sewing as soon as possible.
These are the costumes we decided to bring to Japan:
Because I knew that we are short on time I finished the interview Cosplay 2 weeks after the Preliminary. It was a good feeling to know, that at least one Cosplay is finished before enjoying the holiday in Asia. In Taipei and Japan we went shopping and got most of our material for our WCS costumes. Chinese silk is awesomely cheap over there… We bought wonderful Chinese embroidered silk for about 3-4 Euro per 90 cm. And 50 Meter braids for about 3-5 Euro.
We mostly bought our braids in Dubai. Because they were cheaper than in Taipei.

The skit:

Because I knew we need to practice a lot I finished the audio file in February.

We decided to go for Adekan and to use our preliminary skit, because we got a lot of good advices. I wanted to make a better skit than at the preliminary. So I we though, that pimping up and improving our skit would be a good choice.
The audio consists out of 12 Songs, 25 cuts, 160 pieces and a lot of corrections.
It took me about a month to complete it. I worked at it every day about 4 hours.
We adjusted the audio file till June in order to get the perfect timing and speed for all the effects.
It took me 3 months to write the skit and to rewrite the choreography.
The skit and the choreography has been changed and adjusted till June. We worked a lot on it to make it “better”.
At first it was very difficult for us to learn the choreography and to get used to the new movements, because we are very unsporty and don’t know anything about dancing or material arts. You can imagine that my bruises already got some names… But after 3-4 months it went better and we could start working on smaller movements of the hand and the way of walking.
A lot of people asked me how long we practiced.
We practiced from February till departing every week one between 4-10 hours. Sometimes 2 or 3 times a week. Our last practice was 2 days before departing to Nagoya.

The costumes:

Next were the championship costumes.
I started sewing directly after coming back from my Asia trip in December and it took me about 7 months to complete my championship Cosplay as well as my props and quick change costumes.
Ill write about the construction of them in an other blog.

Ive never put so much time, money and effort into a costume as for the championship.
The costumes are really not perfect but I am

very very happy about them.

I haven’t studied or learned how to sew so I needed to watch a lot of tutorials or ask friends for certain new techniques. But it was worth it.
I worked at them about 4-10 hours a day and I admit it was very exhausting.

The props:
For me it was the first time to build stage props which need to fit into a luggage. My friend owns a very big car, that’s why it was quite a challenge.
For the gate and the box we decided to use a clip box board system.
It is very simple to build up and to transport it.
The cage is made out of plastic pipes.
We shaped the rings with heat in order to get a ring.
I need to admit that I am noob regarding to light stuff. That’s why my friend helped me to construct it. And I just watched and helped him to get the stuff done….
I only know that it took quite a time to finish it and I am really thankfull, that he helped me this much.

Next to the skit and the costume I realized that planning and preparing yourself is also very time consuming and important. The earlier you think about your baggage the earlier you might avoid problems. We had problems to transport our swords, because they are too long for a normal luggage. Cause we though about it beforehand we solved this problem in a very simple and cheap way.

Also informing yourself about the events and what is expected of you is very important.
The most important thing was to inform myself about the hotel, the surroundings of the Hotel regarding craft supplies and batteries etc, as well as about the weather.
Japanese weather is very different to ours in Europe. So I checked what gadgets might be useful in order to survive an outdoor event in the Japanese summer heat.
I also got spares for all of my props, batteries and everything that might be damaged during the transport in the airplane.
Actually planning, making research and preparing myself took about 2-3 months of my sewing and practicing time. I never though that it would be that time consuming.
But it was worth it, because we were prepared for every case and could avoid stressful situations.